This October was, obviously, Pre-NaNoWriMo month. (We thought it apt, since, well, yeah.) We tackled a multitude of things this month, including plotting, dealing with the pressure of a month-long writing extravaganza, and Hawkeye.
Unfortunately, he was rather bruised after that. We let him continue his Hawkhiatus for a little while longer. With NaNoWriMo on the rise, we've also had an AWOLoki this October, which was unexpected but understandable. Hopefully this doesn't become an epidemic, but with NaNoWriMo, anything can happen. (I think we'll get a Hawkeye post this weekend. If that happens, I'll update this post.)
Speaking of the unexpected, Black Widow was the first to spill her secrets this October. Talking about plotting from the perspective of a pantser, she offers a fresh look at common ideas. Flexibility, people-- that's the key if you're hating your restrictions but need them anyway. I know how true that is. Luckily, NaNoWriMo is all about flexibility. (How else can we take an entire month to write a novel?)
Tony Stark never ceases to amaze me. He's annoying to talk to, indecipherable at best, and his beard doesn't make any sense-- and then he comes out with a post as amazing as this. He talks about loglines, and makes them sound fun. (I think Miss Potts wrote his post, frankly.) But yes, his post is excellent. You should read it.
Hey, I can see myself from here! I posted about worldbuilding and research, whether for a science fiction or fantasy novel, or for something historical. No matter what the genre, figuring out setting is a key part of any believable novel. But don't spend too much time on it-- writing comes before setting, all the time. If you have a world but no main character, you're missing the point.
Know what that reminds me of? Yep. It's that time of day.
I get the feeling Thor tried to stay undercover this month, in terms of silliness; leaving his post until the end of the month, trying not to say anything incriminating... but it didn't work. He had a rather fabulous makeover this month:
Look at those sparkles. Cute, no? That color looks good on him. (Hail to the truly worthy wielder of the hammer-- Hello Kitty.)
However, we must consider another color than purple this October. Green, for instance, is rather smashing. (Sorry not sorry.) Dr. Banner spoke about handling the inevitable pressure of NaNoWriMo; in a month when so much rests on how quickly your fingers can type, how does your mind cope? He has several excellent strategies for keeping your head from combining high speeds and desks. (High speeds and thoughts are much more productive, trust me.)
Agent Coulson posts next with a comprehensive how-to on beat sheets. Brainstorming plot this way can be either freeing or restricting, depending on your view of the matter. If you have trouble visualizing your story as something other people would like, this is one way to pull it into a recognizable form that you can get excited about. If you can't abide restrictions in your plot, this might not be for you-- but as an exercise, it's still valuable. Read and ingest.
And, yep, there's Thor again. He talks about outlining in moments, using Dan Wells' 7-point plot system as a framework. I have researched and used this on many occasions, and while it hasn't always worked for me, I've had some enormous epiphanies come from this process. In a month where seconds are precious, having a quick way to outline your story can be useful indeed.
As I mentioned before, both Hawkeye and Loki were unavailable for awesomeness this month. Perhaps NaNoWriMo caught them both off guard (this shows that it happens to both the best, and the worst, of us), but it shall not conquer us. We extend warm wishes toward them and their November plans, and hope they grace us with posts again soon.
We talked a lot about plotting this month. NaNoPrep is full of plotting, and prewriting, and worldbuilding-- so many things that pantsers tend not to do, or even consider. I know the feeling. But you are not alone, you pantsers in the crowd. Even though it feels like we're all experienced plotters, and the only way to write a successful novel is to plot it, that isn't true. I'm a pantser at heart, and while I worldbuilt like a fiend this October, I barely touched my plot. Outlines are no more the way of the future than Tony Stark is a mature individual. No matter what your process, we are with you 'til the end of the line. Or, you know, until we succumb to plot Chitauri-bunnies and inner Hydra-editors. But we won't. You're good.
With that, I'll leave you to your word creations. Here's to a fun, exciting, nonfatal November in the creative fog of NaNoWriMo.